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Typical Time Line of a FWTC Article

By, Tresckow

Some of you have asked a few questions as to the behind the scenes workings of FWTC.  I can’t answer every question.  Wait, that was wrong; I won’t answer any questions.  Sorry, dude, some people are great teachers, others just want people to shut the hell up.

Don't make him tell you again.

But, one question has popped up over and over.  “How does an article get published?”  Most of our columnists don’t know (or care).  If any of us had the talent, we would explain it “School House Rock” style.  But, everyone here is generally a talentless, bitter human being (mostly Roode).

If you're too young to know what the hell this is, we hate you.

Step 1:  Conception

The theory:

This is when we all contribute our ideas and creativity to construct the best subject matter possible.  We painstakingly sift through content and current events in order to be witty, irreverent, and timely.

How it really works:

We send condescending emails to each other, bitching and moaning about how there’s nothing to write about.  Eventually, someone adds a subject draft to the queue and it sits there for months like a piece of chewed gum underneath a classroom desk.  There may or may not be the random “borrowing” of someone else’s subject conception.  In other words, if you’re drawing a blank, steal something one of the other columnists already thought of.

Step 2:  Creation

The theory:

This is the ever important step where the rubber really meets the road.  Each columnist is free to take their work to unimaginable heights!  Every topic is researched thoroughly to ensure the utmost in accuracy.

How it really works:

One of us randomly types shit.  The extent of any article research is typing a term into an internet search engine.  Even then, we’re likely to just pick one of the results without actually reading the web page.  Who has time to research?  More importantly, who has the attention span?  If Wikipedia didn’t exist we would be in deep shit.  Research is really just fancy talk for pointing a finger at someone else when your “facts” end up being complete bullshit.

As far as taking our work to “unimaginable heights,” we set the bar pretty low.  Essentially, if something is funny enough to one of us, it gets printed.  Why shoot for the stars when you can rest comfortably in the blanket of adequacy?  We’re not writing Pulitzer Prize stuff, here.  If an article idea is only a step or two worse than something you would find on Cracked then we struck gold!

More often than not, many of the articles sit in the queue until the owner gets off their ass and starts to type.  This usually involves frequent phone calls and mean Facebook posts with the goal of taunting the article owner and attempting to shame them into adding content.  This really only works 25% of the time.  It almost never works on Ren.

Step 3:  Photo research

The theory:

Ah, the visual aspect of the article.  Nothing quite gets the point across than a good picture.  Tireless efforts by the photo research department provide the reader with the best illustrations, ever!

How it really works:

Well, we sure as hell don’t have a “photo research” department.  We don’t have departments.  Basically, whoever is writing the article looks for the most inappropriate and/or disturbing pic available.  It doesn’t matter, really.  I end up going into everybody’s articles and rearrange the piss out of it until it meets my standards.  Then, eventually, Adel, Roode, or Ren notices after…  oh, lets say…   a month.  By that time who gives a shit?  The damn thing has been in circulation already.  Take your creativity and cram it.  You know, Adel does that sneaking editing shit too.  Oh, I guess it’s different, because everyone is afraid of her.  Well, whoopty-friggin-do.

Step 4:  Editing

The theory:

After each article is complete, it is sent to the chief editor or the head writer to edit for clarity, style, and mistakes.  The editor and the author work in a harmonious fashion to ensure that the needed changes are made without hurting the integrity of the article’s message.

How it really works:

Firstly, none of our articles have integrity, let alone any message.  I suppose “I hate you.” is the closest to a uniform theme we have.  “I hate you.” and “I am one step away from being a full blown John Bonham alcoholic.”

Secondly, our editing sucks.  I do the majority of the copy editing with reluctant support from Adel.  There is no editor-author cooperation.  It’s mother loving Thunderdome.  One of us will go into another’s article, edit it, and in turn, the author will put things right where they had them after some derogatory comments about editor’s mother/family tree/coke addiction.  Harsh words are fired back and forth, until someone caves in or ends up in the fetal position.  You know what?  It doesn’t matter.  Even after the battle, one of us goes back into the article after it’s been published and fucks with it, anyway.  There are articles from LAST WINTER that are still being fought over and edited behind each other’s back.  I’m not sure how none of us has ended up dead yet.  Especially at the hands of Adel.  That chick is crazy.

Step 5:  Publishing

The theory:

After the article has been crafted on the level of a fine whiskey, it is released to our adoring readership.  The publisher pushes all the right buttons and inputs all the right codes to bring you, the reader, pure comic gold!

How it really works:

One of us pushes a button.  The article isn’t so much crafted like a fine whiskey as much as it has been filtered through panty hose into a still the night before.  Usually, we’re all waiting for the other to hit the button of truth and shunt the latest article through the interwebs.  At some point I hit “enter” or “OK” or whatever the hell the button says and toss the article out.  We’ve tried to put all the responsibility of the article’s circulation on the author.  It works half the time.  The other half, not so much.  The author is either too busy with the real world, drunk, or busily drunk in the real world.  I can’t stress the alcoholism of our writing staff enough.

This is typically how one of us ends up after a staff meeting.

Step 6:  Gauging the readers’ reactions

The theory:

After publication, reader opinion and reaction are carefully researched to enable us to fine tune our articles to their tastes.  Whenever a reader posts a comment or, otherwise, contacts us, we diligently follow-up and accurately record his comments.

How it really works:

FWTC creed since 2009